A good read. — 5 years ago
It’s a good read. A nice alround book. :)
146 out of 146 people (100%) think this is worth consuming…
I have to say I prefered the film, it was a lot more cohesive and had a better flow and sense of magic. To me, the book felt a lot like a dream which had been written into book form, which isn’t a particularly good thing- A lot of stuff didn’t feel like it had any real purpose or place, felt like it was just “there” The whole Wales thing, for instance, was not missed when left out of the film. I have to say that definitely, had I read the book first I would not have watched the anime, which would have been a waste as it’s one of my favourite movies ever.
Like a previous reviewer, I found it hard to keep track of which “she/he” referred to which “she/he” in conversations and often found myself actually having to count backward through the remarks until I found a name. Plus the ending was slightly ridiculous (SPOILER) the whole “everyone laughs and holds hands” thing was ridiculous, there was no sense of a building romance until suddenly at the end they’re all “LET’S GETMARRIEDOMG!” the movie handled this much better.(END OF SPOILERS)
While I’m happy this book spawned such an awesome film (and apparently inspired Neil Gaiman for Stardust, another plus), I doubt I’ll read anything else by her- sorry, it was just ok.
I haven’t seen the Miyazaki film, so I can’t say how the two compare. But I definitely enjoyed this story, with its fantastical setting and world yet a quite real flesh-and-blood protagonist you can’t help but care about. The gentle meta-parody of fairy tale formulas at the beginning of the book made me chuckle. If anything, I wished that the story went on a bit longer — the denouement falls on your lap like an anvil, and poof! All is well. The tensions building towards that point are too persuasive to be solved in a single stroke, and I was left wanting to know more, see more, to learn whether or not all really does end well!
I read this book because I really loved the Miyazaki movie by the same name. Honestly, names are practically all the book and movie have in common. The characters and cities have the same names, but personalities and appearances are largely different. Likewise the plot is almost entirely different. However, both are excellent and worth checking out because they are such completely different stories. Just don’t expect things to be the same or even similar.
I absolutely lovedHowl’s Moving Castle. It’s very well-written, and the fantastical world feels completely natural and believable. I’d been putting off watching the movie (I’m a huge fan of Miyazaki) until I’d read the book, but now I don’t know if I want to see the movie at all – there’s no way it can be as good as the book no matter who made the movie. I’ve definitely become a fan of Diana Wynne Jones, and I’ll be reading more of her work very shortly.
Okay, I’ve been thinking this over, and my original “not worth consuming” is probably harsh. The book definitely has charm, with the initial chapters being far and away the best. I’m still turned off by the rush at the end and the unpolish demonstrated in the text – the book could really do with another edit, if only to keep the reader from having to say things like “now, which ‘she’ did that ‘she’ refer to?” so often.
I know it’s popular, and highly-rated everywhere I see a review, but I can’t jump on the bandwagon.
The beginning is pretty good – I enjoy the style and the pace, but then I foud the middle to lag for about 150 pages, when all of a sudden we’re hit by a “well, I guess I should end the book” flurry of activity that’s only loosely connected to the story.